Cherry season has arrived. Happiness abounds. One of the things I’m doing at the moment is writing a Market Watch column in the Village Voice, where I potter around various Farmers Markets and chat to people about what’s fresh and good this week. Cherries were the thing, even beyond rhubarb, that I was really excited to see hit the stalls.
I think it’s genetic; my Mum loves cherries. She’d pick us up from school in the summer with a handful of cherries each, and we’d happily spit stones into the bushes as we walked back to the car, hot as an oven, plastic seats burning our legs. This memory, so hot, bright and vivid, hits me whenever I bite that first cherry. Food is powerful like that.
So this recipe is for when that first flush of gotta-eat-them-immediately! is less keen. For when you can appreciate what they can do in cooking, not just that they exist.
Simple. Pitt a handful or cherries, slice in half, and macerate in a few shakes of balsamic while you slide up a baguette, drizzle with olive oil and salt, and toast in the oven. Once toasted, spread with ricotta, pile on the cherries, and finish with a little more olive oil and salt.
Perfect as a pre-BBQ appetizer, or as a main with a crunchy green salad.
Either way, ideally, eat in the sun.